Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs - Building Homes and Strengthening Communities
May 6, 2011
Media Contact:
Gordon Anderson (512) 475-4743

State housing agency awards $787,000 to preserve, increase homeownership in Center

(AUSTIN) — The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA) today announced two awards totaling $787,000 to the City of Center to help promote and maintain homeownership while providing a shot in the arm to the local economy.

TDHCA awarded the city $265,000 in homebuyer assistance funds which it will use to provide down payment and closing cost assistance to help an estimated 10 eligible residents purchase a home of their own. In addition, Center received a second $522,000 award to fund the repair or replacement of six substandard homes owned and lived in by low income households.

“Increasing homeownership opportunities for households ready to take that big step is an important mission of the Department,” noted Michael Gerber, TDHCA Executive Director. “However, TDHCA is equally committed to repairing substandard housing and helping preserve homeownership for low income families. In both cases, we are helping enhance the vitality of rural communities while generating construction jobs and the payroll, taxes, and fees that help provide essential services at the local level.”

The Department’s homebuyer assistance comes in the form of down payment and closing cost assistance for eligible households purchasing a single-family home. Eligible participants may receive loans up to $20,000 for down payment and closing costs. Assistance will be in the form of a 2nd or 3rd lien, 0 percent interest, five- or 10-year deferred forgivable loan, subject to the amount of assistance provided.

Home repair assistance may include roof repair or replacement, as well as repairs to the electrical and plumbing systems. If a home has deteriorated to the point it no longer is cost effective to repair, it may be demolished and replaced either by a traditional “site built” home or a manufactured home. The home must be the primary residence of the homeowner; rental housing units do not qualify for assistance.

Qualifying applicants include eligible cities and counties, public housing authorities, Community Housing Development Organizations and other nonprofit housing groups, and certain for-profit organizations which then work with qualifying households at the local level.

Funded through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the HOME Program serves households earning no more than 80 percent of the area median family income. For Center, this equals an annual income of $37,200 for a family for four. For more information regarding these awards, please contact the city directly at (936) 598-2941.

About the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs
The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs is committed to expanding fair housing choice and opportunities for Texans through the administration and funding of affordable housing and homeownership opportunities, weatherization, and community-based services with the help of for-profits, nonprofits, and local governments. For more information about fair housing, funding opportunities, or services in your area, please visit www.tdhca.state.tx.us or the Learn about Fair Housing in Texas page. 

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